Deus Ex Aleatorium
In the Beginning...
By Douglas E. Gogerty
If time had any meaning for them, it could be said that they grew up together. However, they have never grown in any sense. It is as if they had always been. Some may call them gods, but they are simply transdimensional entities. Most importantly, they are friends, and have been always.
First, there is the god of the darkness as it is often called. In some places, some people consider this the god of evil. However, that is simply an interpretation. This god simply does not like rules. Chaos is the nature of the multiverse, and the god of darkness believes that imposing order on this chaos is a waste of effort.
Darkness has enormous holdings in the cosmos. Vast stretches filled with darkness and chaos. While ownership is meaningless to this being, this is its dominion. It holds sway of the darkness.
Second, there is the god of the light, again, for lack of a better description. Every pinprick of light visible is the responsibility of this entity. Unlike its friend, this god believes in rules. It attempts to tame the chaos with natural laws and concrete rules.
Without rules and order, there is only darkness. Thus, the influence of the god of light can be felt where there are some rules -- any rules. Therefore, it is also a very powerful influence in the multiverse.
While these two are very different, they enjoy each other's company. Perhaps it is simply that opposites attract. Perhaps it is their exploring different aspects of the same situation. In any event, these beings spend a great deal of time in each other's company.
One thing they both enjoy is explosions. They would spend time in a vast dark portion of the multiverse. The god of darkness would gather up huge quantities of dark matter in a central area.
Once the matter was accumulated, the god of light would configure a set of rules that would cause the accumulation to explode. The order and rules would create interesting and different patterns, which the god of light enjoyed. The chaos and randomness gave great joy to the god of darkness.
Hence, they participated in this activity with great enthusiasm. Once an explosion had taken shape, the rules would be stripped and all would go dark. The pair would repeat the process at their leisure.
With one particular explosion, they were distracted and it went on beyond their normal interval. When they returned, they watched with great interest as stars, planets, and other bodies formed. They watched and watched to see what the rules would bring.
With each new discovery, they would attempt to predict the next. Which planet would be the next to collide with the something? Which comet would escape which solar system? The vastness of the interaction kept them very excited. Thus, they decided to see what would happen if they let it go to its natural conclusion.
Of course, the god of darkness knew that eventually all of the energy would eventually be used up and darkness would prevail. The stars would burn out. The hunks of rocks would go cold. Darkness would once again rule this part of the multiverse. However, how long would it take?
On one particular rock orbiting one particular glowing ball, life formed. It was simple one celled life, but it was a living organism capable of spawning other organisms. Thus, when the pair had the opportunity, they would look in on the planet. Eventually, that single life form turned into multiple life forms.
The rules the god of light had imposed were branching out in interesting ways. These rules were causing interesting things to happen in several places in this created cosmos. However, this particular planet caught the eye of the pair, and they kept going back to it.
Thus, after watching it for a great while, the god of light proposed a wager. He believed that rules and order would take hold on this planet. A natural side effect of this would be intelligent beings. Thus, he wagered that without intervention of either of the two, intelligent life would form and shape the planet to their whim.
Since there is nothing in the rules that would ensure that intelligence would be beneficial over any other survival trait, the god of darkness agreed to the bet. They decided that purposely shaping the environment to the animal's needs would be the definition they would use for intelligence.
Life on the ball struggled. There were disasters that wiped the earth nearly clean of life. The natural laws nearly did the planet in. It was frozen snowball, but life struggled on. Eventually, life forms exploded onto the scene. There was much diversity, and diversifying continued.
Eventually, enormous scaly creatures ruled the lands. Fierce toothy creatures ruled the sea. However, none of the creatures met the definition of intelligent. None of the creatures shaped their environment to suit them.
Small furry animals had the potential to become intelligent, but the dominant species was too much to overcome. These small marsupials occupied nooks and crannies in the ecosystem. It would take a major disaster for these animals to take hold.
The pair watched and waited. The large creatures continued to dominate and diversify. Without their destruction, there was no way for any other animals to take hold. It was looking like the god of darkness was going to win the wager.
Thus, when the god of darkness was not looking, the god of light threw an enormous asteroid at the planet. It crashed into the planets surface and killed all of the large beasts that roamed the planet. Only the small creatures survived. The system had greatly changed, and perhaps intelligence could now arise.
However, the god of light did not get away with these actions. The wager was lost, but the planet was still interesting to the pair. They continued to watch, and intelligence did arise on the planet.
Once again, a wager was struck. With the existing rules in place, they bet on who would become the more powerful entity on the planet. The intelligent creatures were capable of understanding. Would rules run their lives? Would they simply find order in the chaos? Which one would prevail?
These creatures were fruitful and multiplied. They hunted and gathered food. They began living in small clans and began creating order out of the chaos. After several thousand trips around their star, some creatures discovered agriculture.
With agriculture came towns and cities. Civilization was born. Some had time for other things besides obtaining food. Thus, knowledge began accumulating and passed around. The communities were becoming quite sophisticated.
However, these civilized places worshipped multiple gods. Many had gods of light, but they also had equally powerful dark gods. In the largest civilization, Osiris was a god of darkness and was being actively worshipped.
Once again, the god of darkness was winning the wager. It appeared that rules were not the guiding principle for these intelligent beings. They simply attempted to bring order from the chaos. He was once again going to lose. Thus, he was once again going to cheat. However, this time he was going to be more careful.